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What is Onychophagia?

Jun 18

I think I just won the spelling bee! Better known as fingernail biting, it can be damaging to your teeth and gums. Tooth wear, enamel chipping and cracking, is most often the result of nail biting. In our practice, we have also witnessed extreme cases of gum recessions – especially when the patient has a bonded lingual retainer on the lower front teeth. Nail biting can tip the crown back and the root forward exposing the root to the tooth. This can lead to the need for gum grafting and six months of orthodontics to reposition the root. Jaw problems can also be a result of nail biting. The Academy of General Dentistry determined that it costs patients around $4,000 extra to repair damages from nail biting. The most common treatment is to use a nail polish (that tastes terrible) for a while to help break the habit. Denatonium benzoate…

New Product — Air Floss

Jun 2

Every little but helps and it is very time consuming to floss with braces on. I have received great feedback from hygienist of referring dentists, so I purchased an air floss unit for myself. After one week of use, I give it an enthusiastic thumbs up! Technique is important and the tip should be aimed directly between the teeth and gum line. I use mouthwash rather than water and peroxide can be substituted as well.  You can purchase the Sonicare Air Floss online at or Amazon.  If you go on they are offering a coupon for $15 off It is definitely worth the investment. Especially if you or your child have braces. Dr. David McSurdy  

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